Goodbye Stress

Thursday, December 3, 2020

This morning, we took a fast, frosty walk around Elm Ridge Cemetery, and, as always, I found refreshment and wisdom in the walk. One of the little wonders of it was that I put into practice a small but intense truth I’ve been pondering lately – the fact that every single stress I have ever felt has unfolded only in my own thinking. Early in the walk, I was heedlessly playing host to thoughts like “it’s too windy here” and “the highway is too noisy” and “this place is not nearly as beautiful as the forests we usually walk in” – but then, quite suddenly, it came to me that all this stress I was feeling was only in my thoughts. There was absolutely no stress or discouragement or dismay in the cemetery itself. It was all inside me!

And that was a door swinging suddenly open. I said a gracious goodbye to the gloomy thoughts, and slowly the cemetery started looking like the absolutely perfect place for a walk. I seemed to see my downbeat thoughts drifting down the sky and across the Mystic River, and the rest of my walk was a wonderful trip through a 79-year-old walker’s paradise (below).

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